Opposition Parliamentarian, Anil Nandlall is questioning when the government will begin implementing the recommendations that are outlined in the final Report of the Security Sector Reform Project (SSRP) that was prepared by British security expert, Lt. Col (Ret’d) Russell Combe.
Combe handed over the report on January 18, last, to President David Granger, who hailed it as a monumental achievement for the coalition administration. Granger said that it aimed at addressing the root causes of crime and correcting over two decades of mismanagement of the security sector.
Nandlall, in his weekly column, the “Unruly Horse”, is contending that since the handing over, the document has not yet left the custody of the President.
“It has not even been discussed at Cabinet, nor has it yet reached the hands of the Public Security Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan. From all indications, this is a Report intended to boost the security sector’s capability to tackle crime. No one can dispute that the crime situation continues to spiral to greater heights. There is no discernible plan on the part of the Government to combat this monster. In such an environment, one would have thought that a Government would move with rapidity to implement the recommendations contained in this Report.” Nandlall said.
He added that the government’s inability to expedite the recommendations, points to incompetence.
“This either constitutes the worst kind of incompetence, or it is irrefutable evidence that the subject Minister is being sidelined It is difficult to determine which is worse.”
A US$4.7B programme was initially scrapped in 2009 by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Administration after the British Government had requested to have oversight of the programme, to ensure that there was ‘value for money’.
The resuscitation of the project was done in 2016 after President Granger met former UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, and made a request for security sector reform.
Cameron agreed by facilitating Combe, an expert from the Olive Group, which was contracted by Engineering, Design, Construction, Management (AECOM), on behalf of the United Kingdom Government.